Published On: Fri, Nov 29th, 2019

Neslihan Zabcı Erdal, a Turkish ceramic & mosaic artist decorating the environment

Neslihan ZABCI ERDAL is a “CERAMIC & MOSAIC” ARTIST who lives in Bodrum, one of the most prominent holiday resorts of Turkey. She has been practicing various fields of art for more than 35 years, freelancing in graphic design, illustrating two children’s books, making ceramics, working as art director in films; and also making mosaics since 2000 when she attended a course by Luciana Notturni in Ravenna.

She designs and creates mosaic murals and mosaic sculptures for public spaces, gardens, homes, businesses and community projects from her studio called BUKALEMUNART in Bodrum, Turkey. She also makes smaller artworks for exhibitions and private collections.

She uses a variety of materials, the emphasis being on ceramic tiles, glass, and the ceramic pieces she makes. Before starting to make mosaics, she had a ceramic studio in Istanbul for 15 years, where she and her partner made large scale ceramic murals for hotels and businesses. Thus her devotion and love for ceramics continues, incorporating self-made ceramics into her mosaic creations.

Having attended the Graphic Design BA Hons course at De Montford University, Leicester, UK, she pays special attention to the design and graphic detail of her mosaic work. She likes to design with organic forms and elements from nature. The designs for her largest public project, the mosaicing of the 43 tree planters on the main Street of Bodrum, consist of themes from nature, history and architecture of the Bodrum Peninsula. She was invited to make a presentation about her tree mosaics in Ravenna Mosaico 2015 and Gaziantep International Mosaic Competition 2015.

Being part of the Chile Urban Mosaic Intervention in 2014, working with 80 artists on a big mosaic, she found herself participating in various community projects around the world, sometimes attending in person, sometimes sending work created in the studio. “Le Finestre di Brenta”, “Signs” project, International Mosaic Festival in Bourgogne, the Undersea Mosaic mural in Tongoy, Chile, mosaics of the church in Arezzo, Italy, 2nd. International Mosaic Symposium in Sardinia, Italy are some of these projects.

Neslihan is a member of SAMA, CMA and AIMC. She loves every stage in the making of a mosaic: problem-solving in creation of the design as well as in choosing the materials and techniques, the hard work that goes into building the base of a sculpture or cutting the tesserae, installing it in the summer heat or winter cold… but what tops it all is the happiness and gratitude she sees in viewers of a finished artwork, especially when it’s in a public space and people from all different backgrounds give the same positive feedback.


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